The Miami Design District Still Has Plans for the Winter

Despite Art Basel Miami Beach getting canceled, the Miami Design District will forge ahead with ten days of programming in the spirit of safely bringing people together.

The Moore Building in the Miami Design District

Even though Art Basel Miami Beach has been canceled, the Miami Design District is forging ahead with an ambitious schedule of responsible winter programming. The agenda will see the buzzy collectible fair Design Miami, long held concurrently with Art Basel Miami Beach, return to its original home in the neighborhood’s Moore Building, which will also feature live events, activations, and exhibitions by major galleries that usually show with the international art fair. 

According to Miami Design District founder Craig Robins, who also co-founded Design Miami, launching this year’s winter programming was a last-minute decision that seeks to cater to the influx of art and design enthusiasts that recently migrated to Miami. “We decided to do this within the past 30 days, so we’re mobilizing,” he tells The Art Newspaper, further noting his eagerness “to figure out a socially responsible way to celebrate culture” during the week. Though the programming will only last for ten days, Robins is offering the exhibition space to galleries at a reduced rate for up to four months. “The idea is that everybody is having a hard enough time right now, so it’s more about the spirit of collaboration and wanting to make something happen than trying to squeeze the last dollar out of it.” 

In tandem with the announcement, Design Miami has revealed details about its 16th edition, which will take the form of the flexible group selling exhibition, Podium, that the fair debuted virtually earlier this year. Aric Chen, Design Miami’s curatorial director, has chosen the theme America(s): a timely topic that calls into question our different understandings of America and its identity through works of art, design, and craftsmanship. Broad in scope, the exhibition will span objects ranging from Shaker furniture and 20th-century works by Wendell Castle to contemporary pieces by Ini Archibong, Katie Stout, and the Haas Brothers. Despite the circumstances, Robins remains optimistic: “[The programming] will be smaller in scale, but very concentrated. There’s a lot for people to do and still celebrate culture.”

“Social Topography” by Tatiana Bilbao, on sale as part of Design Miami’s Architects for Beirut fundraiser. Image courtesy of Design Miami

In the meantime, Beirut-born architects Makram el Kadi, Ziad Jamaleddine, and Amale Andraos recently launched Architects for Beirut, a charitable sale in which 100 percent of proceeds will directly benefit Beirut Urban Lab’s on-the-ground efforts to help restore buildings and public spaces after an explosion devastated the city in August. Design Miami is hosting the fundraiser for five weeks via Podium, where one-off hand drawings, signed prints, and architectural models from nearly 100 architects including Norman Foster, Zaha Hadid, and David Adjaye are up for grabs. The sale ends on Nov. 17.


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